Current CMA News CMA issues statement in response to Gov. Newsom's order to protect public health officials from harassment In response to Newsom’s executive order, CMA President Peter N. Bretan, Jr., M.D., and Health Officers Association of California  Executive Director Kat DeBurgh, MPH, issued the following statement Thu, 24 Sep 2020 16:26:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-24 16:26 +00:00 2020-09-24 09:26 -07:00 CMA launches new survey to assess impact of pandemic on physician practice viability Now that we are six months into the pandemic, CMA is launching a follow up survey to reevaluate practice viability. Thu, 24 Sep 2020 16:09:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-24 16:09 +00:00 2020-09-24 09:09 -07:00 CMA Wellness expands peer coaching support to more health care workers C4CN recently expanded its mission to help more health care workers struggling with any stress-related challenge or who simply want to take action to feel more empowered. Tue, 22 Sep 2020 09:37:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-22 09:37 +00:00 2020-09-22 02:37 -07:00 DMHC’s emergency regulations on COVID-19 testing are less protective than federal law Rather than broadening access to COVID-19 testing like the federal law has done, CMA believes the emergency regulations create barriers that will delay medically necessary access to COVID-19 testing and adds confusion about whether the test will be a covered benefit. The emergency regulations are also less protective than federal law. Tue, 22 Sep 2020 09:18:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-22 09:18 +00:00 2020-09-22 02:18 -07:00 AMA adds two new CPT codes related to COVID-19 AMA has added two new CPT codes to meet the needs of the health care industry as medical advancements expand the fight against COVID-19. The update to the CPT code set was approved by the CPT Editorial Panel for immediate use. Fri, 18 Sep 2020 13:11:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-18 13:11 +00:00 2020-09-18 06:11 -07:00 Next Virtual Grand Rounds to focus on therapeutic COVID-19 updates The fourth in our monthly Virtual Grand Rounds series – Virtual Grand Rounds: COVID-19 Updates in Therapeutics – will be Tuesday, October 13, 2020, at 12 p.m. Participants will learn how to: Tue, 15 Sep 2020 13:08:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-15 13:08 +00:00 2020-09-15 06:08 -07:00 DCA again extends physician licensing waivers DCA has extended two waivers that give flexibility to physicians with expiring licenses. Wed, 09 Sep 2020 13:36:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 13:36 +00:00 2020-09-09 06:36 -07:00 DMHC tells payors they must continue telehealth payment parity  DMHC issued an all plan letter reminding health plans of the continued requirement to reimburse providers at the same rate for telehealth services Wed, 09 Sep 2020 09:19:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 09:19 +00:00 2020-09-09 02:19 -07:00 CMA distributes two-month supply of free PPE to more than 40k California physicians CMA mobilized with its local county medical societies, the state of California and Altais to bring more than 40 million pieces of PPE to physicians free of charge, so that they can safely provide care for California residents. Wed, 09 Sep 2020 09:10:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 09:10 +00:00 2020-09-09 02:10 -07:00 New CME webinars on managing patients at risk of severe disease from COVID-19 CMA has partnered with Rockpointe—a leading provider of CME—to provide free webinars for physicians and other health care providers who are treating patients are at increased risk for more severe COVID-19 disease. Wed, 09 Sep 2020 07:22:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 07:22 +00:00 2020-09-09 00:22 -07:00 CME webinar offers guidance for managing patients with obesity during COVID-19 Rockpointe, a leading provider of CME, is offering a free and live one-hour webinar, “Obesity and COVID-19 in the Outpatient Setting: What Clinicians Need to Know” on Thursday, September 17 , 2020, at 4:00 p.m. Wed, 09 Sep 2020 06:46:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 06:46 +00:00 2020-09-08 23:46 -07:00 CME webinars offer guidance for managing patients with lung cancer during COVID-19 Rockpointe, a leading provider of CME,  has collaborated with state medical societies and global oncology associations to offer a free and live one-hour webinar, “Lung Cancer and COVID-19 in the Outpatient Setting: What Clinicians Need to Know.”  Wed, 09 Sep 2020 06:40:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-09 06:40 +00:00 2020-09-08 23:40 -07:00 Next installment of CMA’s telehealth webinar series to discuss the patient experience The third installment of CMA’s Telehealth Webinar Series for Small and Medium Sized Practices “The Patient Experience” is now open for registration. Tue, 01 Sep 2020 13:40:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-01 13:40 +00:00 2020-09-01 06:40 -07:00 CMA physician COVID-19 testing survey finds widespread challenges, immediate need for improvements The survey results highlight the immediate need for improvements in the testing supply chain, timelier test processing, and better data and reporting of COVID-19 test results. Tue, 01 Sep 2020 13:22:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-01 13:22 +00:00 2020-09-01 06:22 -07:00 Physician input needed: CMA telehealth survey CMA is surveying physicians regarding their experience with telehealth, both before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tue, 01 Sep 2020 13:19:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-09-01 13:19 +00:00 2020-09-01 06:19 -07:00 Gov. Newsom announces new “Blueprint” to guide California’s reopening activities Governor Gavin Newsom today announced a new framework to guide California’s reopening activities, called “Blueprint for a Safer California.”  Fri, 28 Aug 2020 16:48:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-28 16:48 +00:00 2020-08-28 09:48 -07:00 Cal/OSHA releases new guidance for health care facilities on use of N95 masks and other respirators The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, better known as Cal/OSHA, on August 6, 2020, released interim guidance for health care employers that may be facing shortages of respirators during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Tue, 25 Aug 2020 15:22:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-25 15:22 +00:00 2020-08-25 08:22 -07:00 HHS again extends provider relief fund deadlines; Physicians have until Sept. 13 to apply HHS is again extending the deadline for physicians to apply for the Provider Relief Fund for both Medicare and Medicaid providers.  Tue, 25 Aug 2020 09:25:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-25 09:25 +00:00 2020-08-25 02:25 -07:00 Repayment deadlines loom for Medicare advance payment loans The California Medical Association (CMA) and the American Medical Association have urged Congress to lower the interest rate and extend repayment timeline, so that payments don’t come due at a time when many physician practices are still struggling. Tue, 18 Aug 2020 09:44:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-18 09:44 +00:00 2020-08-18 02:44 -07:00 Physicians: Tell us what your experience is with COVID-19 testing Testing for COVID-19 is a top priority for California and is critical not only for the diagnosis, but for our understanding, management and treatment of COVID-19. COVID-19 testing is the responsibility of our entire health care system, and physicians are a critical component of ensuring the right individuals are tested, at the right place and at the right time. Tue, 18 Aug 2020 09:38:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-18 09:38 +00:00 2020-08-18 02:38 -07:00 Department of Consumer Affairs extends waiver relaxing health care workforce rules The California Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) has extended a waiver that temporarily removes the ratios for physicians supervising nurse practitioners and physician assistants. Physicians can continue to supervise the number of NPs or PAs they can competently and confidently supervise without a statutory ratio in place. Wed, 12 Aug 2020 14:45:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-12 14:45 +00:00 2020-08-12 07:45 -07:00 Next Virtual Grand Rounds to focus on transmission, testing and masks The third in our monthly Virtual Grand Rounds series – Transmission, Testing and Masks: creating a culture to curb COVID-19 – will be Tuesday, September 8, 2020, at 12 p.m.  Tue, 11 Aug 2020 13:47:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-11 13:47 +00:00 2020-08-11 06:47 -07:00 Blue Shield announces temporary increases to professional fee schedule In an August 5, 2020, notice to providers, Blue Shield announced it would be temporarily increasing reimbursement rates for certain Evaluation and Management services to help reduce the negative impacts to practices as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Tue, 11 Aug 2020 13:20:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-11 13:20 +00:00 2020-08-11 06:20 -07:00 Provider Relief Fund deadline extended for Medicaid providers, will reopen portal for Medicare providers The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has extended the deadline for physicians to apply for the  Wed, 05 Aug 2020 10:54:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-05 10:54 +00:00 2020-08-05 03:54 -07:00 CMS proposes a controversial Medicare Physician Fee Schedule for 2021 On August 3, 2020, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published its proposed 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule.  Wed, 05 Aug 2020 10:16:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-08-05 10:16 +00:00 2020-08-05 03:16 -07:00 Senate Republicans unveil details of fourth COVID-19 relief package Senate Republicans have released details of their version of the fourth COVID-19 relief package, known as the Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection and Schools (HEALS) Act. The package of bills addresses a broad range of issues, including medical supply chain problems, reopening schools and restaurant worker support. Fri, 31 Jul 2020 19:17:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-31 19:17 +00:00 2020-07-31 12:17 -07:00 CMA kicks off first of more than 3 dozen PPE relief events at Rose Bowl in Pasadena The first of dozens of PPE distribution events around the state began this week, as CMA partnered with its component medical societies and the State of California to bring millions of medical-grade masks, gloves and gowns to physicians who need them. Mon, 27 Jul 2020 17:09:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-27 17:09 +00:00 2020-07-27 10:09 -07:00 CMA launches telehealth webinar series for small- and medium-sized practices CMA is launching a new 12-part webinar series – Telehealth for Small and Medium Sized Practices.  The 12 presentations will take place over the next six months, Mon, 27 Jul 2020 12:09:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-27 12:09 +00:00 2020-07-27 05:09 -07:00 Next Virtual Grand Rounds to focus on COVID-19, children and opening schools; Register today The second in our monthly Virtual Grand Rounds series –  COVID-19 - The State of the Pandemic, Children, and Opening Schools  – will be Tuesday, August 11, 2020, at 12 p.m. Mon, 27 Jul 2020 10:14:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-27 10:14 +00:00 2020-07-27 03:14 -07:00 Trump administration renews public health emergency The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has officially renewed the public health emergency declaration for the coronavirus pandemic. Mon, 27 Jul 2020 08:45:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-27 08:45 +00:00 2020-07-27 01:45 -07:00 HNFS updates billing guidance for TRICARE telemedicine services Health Net Federal Services (HNFS) recently published updated guidance for physicians billing for telemedicine services provided to TRICARE enrollees. Thu, 23 Jul 2020 10:13:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-23 10:13 +00:00 2020-07-23 03:13 -07:00 California issues new COVID-19 testing guidelines as demand and cases surges The California Department of Public Health has issued new guidance that establishes a tiered system to determine who should get COVID-19 tests and the priority order for processing those tests.  Tue, 21 Jul 2020 16:38:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-21 16:38 +00:00 2020-07-21 09:38 -07:00 Medical personnel needed for paid disaster service work as COVID-19 cases spike As COVID-19 cases surge across California, the California Emergency Medical Services Authority (EMSA) is looking for additional medical personnel to staff alternate care sites in Southern California. Tue, 21 Jul 2020 15:00:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-21 15:00 +00:00 2020-07-21 08:00 -07:00 Deadline to apply for Medicaid targeted distribution has been extended to August 3 The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has extended the deadline for to apply to receive a portion of the $15 billion “targeted distribution” for Medicaid-dependent providers.  Tue, 21 Jul 2020 11:08:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-21 11:08 +00:00 2020-07-21 04:08 -07:00 California health care leaders respond to new COVID-19 testing guidance COVID-19 cases are spiking across California, creating shortages in essential testing supplies. Though the state issued new guidance Tuesday regarding COVID-19 testing, we want to make clear that most physician practices, health centers and pharmacies simply do not have the supplies on hand to meet the current need for COVID-19 testing.  Wed, 15 Jul 2020 10:45:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-15 10:45 +00:00 2020-07-15 03:45 -07:00 California health officials urge physicians to screen patients for suicide risk Concerned about the COVID-19 epidemic’s immediate and long-term impacts on mental health, California health officials are urging physicians to screen patients to help identify those at risk of suicide. Tue, 14 Jul 2020 16:34:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-14 16:34 +00:00 2020-07-14 09:34 -07:00 HHS says Provider Relief Fund payments are taxable as income The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has updated its Provider Relief Fund FAQ to clarify that payments from the Provider Relief Fund are taxable. According to the FAQ, such payments do qualify as disaster relief payments under section 139 of the Internal Revenue Code. Mon, 13 Jul 2020 14:48:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-13 14:48 +00:00 2020-07-13 07:48 -07:00 Earn 1.5 CME for participating in our free COVID-19 Virtual Grand Rounds On Tuesday, July 14, 2020, the California Medical Association (CMA) and the California Health and Human Services Agency (CHHS) will host the first in our new series of virtual grand rounds for the state’s clinicians on the on the evolution of the novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and management of COVID-19 patients. Fri, 10 Jul 2020 12:57:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-10 12:57 +00:00 2020-07-10 05:57 -07:00 The Physicians Foundation invites physicians to participate COVID-19 survey The Physicians Foundation—a national, not-for-profit seeking to advance the work of practicing physicians and facilitate the delivery of high-quality health care to patients—is surveying physicians nationwide to learn how COVID-19 is affecting their practices and their perspectives. Wed, 08 Jul 2020 16:51:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-08 16:51 +00:00 2020-07-08 09:51 -07:00 Stories from the Pandemic - a new audio documentary series from the Nocturnists At the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the California Medical Association’s (CMA) partner podcast the Nocturnists began Wed, 08 Jul 2020 16:22:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-08 16:22 +00:00 2020-07-08 09:22 -07:00 CMA urges state to convene advisory group to address COVID-19 outbreak in state prisons CMA urged the Newsom Administration to immediately convene an advisory group to address the COVID-19 outbreak at San Quentin State Prison and proactively work to prevent similar outbreaks at other state prisons. Tue, 07 Jul 2020 16:07:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-07 16:07 +00:00 2020-07-07 09:07 -07:00 CMA opposes new federal rule that would revoke thousands of student visas This week, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced changes to student visa programs that would revoke student visas for thousands of international students Tue, 07 Jul 2020 15:29:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-07 15:29 +00:00 2020-07-07 08:29 -07:00 Congress gives small businesses more time to apply for PPP loans The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) on July 6, 2020, resumed accepting applications following the passage of the Paycheck Protection Program Extension Act. The new deadline to apply for a PPP loan is August 8, 2020. Tue, 07 Jul 2020 15:21:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-07 15:21 +00:00 2020-07-07 08:21 -07:00 Reminder: Deadline to apply for relief from Medicaid Targeted Distribution is July 20 On Wednesday, June 10, 2020, HHS opened a new  “Medicaid Targeted Distribution” portal  through which Medicaid-dependent physicians can apply to receive a portion of the $15 billion “targeted distribution” for Medicaid providers. Physicians must apply for the funding before July 20, 2020. The funding does not need to be repaid. Tue, 07 Jul 2020 15:10:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-07 15:10 +00:00 2020-07-07 08:10 -07:00 CMA partners with State of California and Altais to provide free PPE to physician practices In an effort to ensure California physicians can continue to provide care to patients during the COVID-19 outbreak, the State of California is partnering with the California Medical Association (CMA) to provide free medical-grade personal protective equipment (PPE) – including N95 and surgical masks, gowns, gloves and face shields – to small and medium sized medical practices across the state. Tue, 07 Jul 2020 13:05:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-07 13:05 +00:00 2020-07-07 06:05 -07:00 CMA sponsors bill to protect health officers CMA is sponsoring a bill authored by state Senator Richard Pan, M.D., that will protect California’s public health officers. Wed, 01 Jul 2020 14:30:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-07-01 14:30 +00:00 2020-07-01 07:30 -07:00 First COVID-19 Virtual Grand Rounds webinar is July 14; Register today The first Virtual Grand Rounds – State of COVID-19 with California Public Health Leaders – will be Tuesday, July 14, 2020, at 12 p.m. Tue, 30 Jun 2020 15:20:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-30 15:20 +00:00 2020-06-30 08:20 -07:00 CMA urges Anthem to delay specialty medication policy CMA and a number of specialty medical associations have asked Anthem Blue Cross to delay implementation of a new policy requiring that specialty pharmacy medications administered in the office or outpatient hospital setting be obtained exclusively through CVS Specialty pharmacy. Tue, 30 Jun 2020 09:04:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-30 09:04 +00:00 2020-06-30 02:04 -07:00 CMA President Peter Bretan, M.D., issues a statement in response to state budget signing This is a budget that protects and reflects California values. California is in the midst of unprecedented economic uncertainty and an ongoing pandemic. This budget protects access to critical health care as we struggle to contain COVID-19. Mon, 29 Jun 2020 19:24:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-29 19:24 +00:00 2020-06-29 12:24 -07:00 Physicians can opt out of MIPS for 2020 and be held harmless from payment adjustments CMS announced that physicians will have the option to opt out completely or partially from Medicare’s 2020 Merit-Based Incentive Payment System. Thu, 25 Jun 2020 16:41:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-25 16:41 +00:00 2020-06-25 09:41 -07:00 USMLE opens regional testing center at UCSF In its continued effort to identify alternate-delivery methods, the USMLE Program has opened additional regional testing centers at medical schools, including one at the UCSF School of Medicine. Tue, 23 Jun 2020 15:33:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-23 15:33 +00:00 2020-06-23 08:33 -07:00 CMA President condemns President Trump’s racist remarks President Trump’s racist dog whistle remarks have no place in our politics or in the house of medicine. Comments like those made by the president last weekend at a political rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma fuel racist stereotypes about COVID-19. Tue, 23 Jun 2020 15:05:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-23 15:05 +00:00 2020-06-23 08:05 -07:00 Podcast: Putting the Public into Health To  inform the public on the latest developments surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Senator Richard Pan, M.D., launched a new podcast—“Putting the Public Into Health.”  Tue, 23 Jun 2020 12:59:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-23 12:59 +00:00 2020-06-23 05:59 -07:00 Newsom issues statewide mask order as California cases reach all time high After seeing the highest daily spike in COVID-19 cases, Governor Gavin Newsom on Thursday issued an executive order that requires all California residents to wear face coverings while in public, including when shopping, taking public transit or seeking medical care. Fri, 19 Jun 2020 13:33:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-19 13:33 +00:00 2020-06-19 06:33 -07:00 OptumRx to reinstate policy requiring e-prescribing for controlled substances on July 1 OptumRx—the pharmacy benefit provider for UnitedHealthcare—will reinstate its mandatory e-prescribing policy for controlled substances effective July 1, 2020.  Fri, 19 Jun 2020 09:43:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-19 09:43 +00:00 2020-06-19 02:43 -07:00 CMA President Peter N. Bretan, Jr., M.D., statement on Gov. Newsom's statewide mask order Wearing face coverings in public slows the spread of COVID-19 and saves lives. Wearing face coverings in public is an important public safety measure that will slow the transmission of the coronavirus, and make it more likely our state can stay on a path toward reopening Thu, 18 Jun 2020 12:49:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-18 12:49 +00:00 2020-06-18 05:49 -07:00 CMA adds three new COVID-19 webinars CMA has added three new COVID-19 webinars to the schedule. These webinars are free to all interested parties as part of CMA’s ongoing support for physicians during the COVID-19 pandemic. Tue, 16 Jun 2020 14:16:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-16 14:16 +00:00 2020-06-16 07:16 -07:00 Medicaid targeted distribution portal open now HHS has opened a new “Medicaid Targeted Distribution” portal through which Medicaid-dependent physicians can apply to receive a portion of the $15 billion “targeted distribution” for Medicaid providers.   Tue, 16 Jun 2020 13:42:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-16 13:42 +00:00 2020-06-16 06:42 -07:00 Legislature passes budget that protects health care On Monday, the California Legislature passed a balanced budget for fiscal year 2020-2021, rejecting many of the health care cuts proposed by Governor Gavin Newsom in his May Revise budget proposal. Tue, 16 Jun 2020 12:06:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-16 12:06 +00:00 2020-06-16 05:06 -07:00 Coalition of physician orgs urges Congress to pass liability protections for physicians CMA—in conjunction with AMA and 42 other state, specialty, and national medical associations representing hundreds of thousands of physicians—sent a letter to Congressional leaders, urging them to pass legislation to protect physicians from unfair lawsuits during COVID-19 pandemic. Fri, 12 Jun 2020 15:17:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-12 15:17 +00:00 2020-06-12 08:17 -07:00 CMA urges Congress to provide aid to states and physicians   The California Medical Association (CMA) and six other large state medical associations signed a joint letter asking the U.S. Senate to prioritize the stability of our state-federal partnerships that form the foundation of our health care delivery system. Wed, 10 Jun 2020 15:24:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-10 15:24 +00:00 2020-06-10 08:24 -07:00 HHS announces $15 billion in relief payments for Medicaid and CHIP providers Today, HHS announced approximately $15 billion in relief for providers that participate in state Medicaid  programs and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). T Tue, 09 Jun 2020 16:22:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-09 16:22 +00:00 2020-06-09 09:22 -07:00 CMA deeply disturbed by unfair attacks on local health officers The California Medical Association is deeply disturbed and saddened by unfair attacks on California’s county and city health officers.  Tue, 09 Jun 2020 15:29:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-09 15:29 +00:00 2020-06-09 08:29 -07:00 CMA seeks waiver to allow residents to obtain postgrad training license without clinical skills exam On May 26, 2020, the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) program announced that due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the unique, human-to-human delivery mode of the Step 2 Clinical Skills examination, testing would be suspended for the next 12-18 months to protect the health of examinee. Fri, 05 Jun 2020 14:58:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-05 14:58 +00:00 2020-06-05 07:58 -07:00 New funding available for safety-net practices to implement virtual care Community health centers and independent physician practices that predominantly serve low-income communities are eligible to apply.  Fri, 05 Jun 2020 13:16:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-05 13:16 +00:00 2020-06-05 06:16 -07:00 DCA extends physician licensing waivers Under the new waiver extension, physicians with licenses that expire between March 31, 2020, and July 28, 2020, will have six months after the public health emergency is lifted to complete their required CME. This waiver applies to physicians licensed by the Medical Board of California and the Osteopathic Medical Board of California. Thu, 04 Jun 2020 16:45:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-04 16:45 +00:00 2020-06-04 09:45 -07:00 CMA President Peter N. Bretan statement in support of county and city health officials CMA is deeply disturbed by the news that some local health officers, many of whom have been working tirelessly over the last three months, have been subject to unfair and uninformed attacks and have become political targets for those seeking to vent their frustrations about what must be done to protect the public at large. Thu, 04 Jun 2020 12:02:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-04 12:02 +00:00 2020-06-04 05:02 -07:00 Congressional leaders demand answers to why HHS hasn’t disbursed relief funds to Medicaid providers Key Congressional leaders wrote to HHS Secretary Alex Azar raising concerns about the delay in disbursing provider relief funds to Medicaid-dependent providers. Wed, 03 Jun 2020 16:47:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-03 16:47 +00:00 2020-06-03 09:47 -07:00 CMA publishes templates for communicating with patients about reopening As medical practices begin the process of reopening after the COVID-19 shut down, one of the more difficult parts of the process may be communicating with patients and others. Wed, 03 Jun 2020 10:26:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-03 10:26 +00:00 2020-06-03 03:26 -07:00 Provider relief expected soon for specialties without heavy Medicare caseloads The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is beta testing a new portal to facilitate distribution of provider relief funds to physicians who were not eligible for the first two traunches. Tue, 02 Jun 2020 16:47:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-02 16:47 +00:00 2020-06-02 09:47 -07:00 CMA hosting SBA webinar for physicians on June 3 Representatives from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will be joining the California Medical Association (CMA) on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, at 12:15 p.m. to present a webinar on the economic relief available to physicians under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act. Tue, 02 Jun 2020 12:32:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-02 12:32 +00:00 2020-06-02 05:32 -07:00 REMINDER! Tomorrow is deadline to apply for 2nd round of HHS provider relief funds Physicians who believe they are eligible to receive payments from the second $20 billion distribution from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Provider Relief Fund must apply for the funding before June 3, 2020. Tue, 02 Jun 2020 10:42:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-06-02 10:42 +00:00 2020-06-02 03:42 -07:00 Bill introduced to protect physicians from unfair lawsuits during COVID-19 pandemic Congress will be considering a bill  that would provide health care professionals, and the facilities in which they work, protections from COVID-19-related lawsuits.  Fri, 29 May 2020 11:38:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-29 11:38 +00:00 2020-05-29 04:38 -07:00 House passes bill to provide flexibility for PPP loans The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday overwhelmingly passed the “ Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act ” (HR 6886) to give small businesses more time and flexibility  to use their Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. Fri, 29 May 2020 08:50:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-29 08:50 +00:00 2020-05-29 01:50 -07:00 HHS awards nearly $500 million to expand testing capacity in California HHS recently awarded to California $499,203,180 in new funding to support testing for COVID-19. This funding will provide critical support to develop, purchase, administer, process and analyze COVID-19 tests, as well as to conduct surveillance, trace contacts and related activities. Tue, 26 May 2020 13:13:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-26 13:13 +00:00 2020-05-26 06:13 -07:00 Deadline to apply for 2nd round of HHS provider relief funds is June 3 Physicians who believe they are eligible to receive payments from the second $20 billion distribution from the HHS Provider Relief Fund must apply for the funding before June 3, 2020.  Fri, 22 May 2020 16:01:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-22 16:01 +00:00 2020-05-22 09:01 -07:00 CMA backs new PBGH initiative to support primary care in California CMA has joined a coalition of physician, health care and business leaders who are calling on state lawmakers to ensure health insurance companies pay their fair share to maintain our health care infrastructure, and to ensure we emerge from the COVID-19 crisis with a health care system that can meet patients’ needs. Thu, 21 May 2020 17:31:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-21 17:31 +00:00 2020-05-21 10:31 -07:00 Senators introduce medical student loan relief parity for California and Texas physicians A bipartisan bill has been introduced in the U.S. Senate that would clarify the federal Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program that inadvertently excluded many California and Texas physicians from education loan forgiveness because of state laws. Wed, 20 May 2020 12:10:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-20 12:10 +00:00 2020-05-20 05:10 -07:00 CMA hosts COVID-19 webinar for medical staffs and hospital-based physicians The California Medical Association (CMA) is hosting a webinar on Thursday, May 21, 2020, to look at the most significant waivers of state and federal laws during the COVID-19 public health emergency, and how these changes have impacted care delivery. Tue, 19 May 2020 14:52:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-19 14:52 +00:00 2020-05-19 07:52 -07:00 Provider Relief Fund attestation deadline approaching Physicians who were allocated a payment from the initial $30 billion general distribution from the HHS Provider Relief Fund must sign an attestation confirming receipt of the funds and agree to the terms and conditions within 45 days of payment.  Tue, 19 May 2020 12:58:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-19 12:58 +00:00 2020-05-19 05:58 -07:00 AMA cautions about limitations of antibody testing for COVID-19  AMA has published guidance to help ensure physicians and the general public are aware of the limitations and potential uses of serological testing, also known as antibody testing. Tue, 19 May 2020 12:33:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-19 12:33 +00:00 2020-05-19 05:33 -07:00 SBA publishes Paycheck Protection Program loan forgiveness application; Funds still available for new loans On Friday, May 15, 2020, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Department of the Treasury  published  the Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness Application. Tue, 19 May 2020 11:50:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-19 11:50 +00:00 2020-05-19 04:50 -07:00 HHS again updates Provider Relief Fund allocation rules On May 15, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) updated and clarified the distribution of Provider Relief Funds and how to estimate the second allocation of payments. Fri, 15 May 2020 19:46:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-15 19:46 +00:00 2020-05-15 12:46 -07:00 U.S. House passes $3 trillion COVID-19 response bill The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to pass “The Heroes Act” (HR 6800) Friday evening, a comprehensive $3 trillion package to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill was introduced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and outlines the priorities of the democratic leadership for a new COVID relief bill. Fri, 15 May 2020 16:43:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-15 16:43 +00:00 2020-05-15 09:43 -07:00 Revised state budget proposal includes major health care cuts Gov. Gavin Newsom released his updated state budget proposal this week for the fiscal year 2020-21. While the governor’s January proposal provided billions in new revenues and health care spending, the revised proposal reflects an economy battered by the fallout from COVID-19, and sets up a month-long fight over program priorities in the Legislature and with the Newsom Administration.  Fri, 15 May 2020 16:37:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-15 16:37 +00:00 2020-05-15 09:37 -07:00 DWC to reimburse for telehealth services retroactively to March 1 The California Division of Workers’ Compensation on Tuesday announced that it has retroactively updated the effective date for coverage of telehealth services for injured workers. Thu, 14 May 2020 16:25:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-14 16:25 +00:00 2020-05-14 09:25 -07:00 DWC increases reimbursement for telephone visit E/M codes The California Division of Workers’ Compensation  on Tuesday announced that it will increase the reimbursement for telephone evaluation and management (E/M) codes (CPT codes 99441, 99442, 99443). Wed, 13 May 2020 16:42:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-13 16:42 +00:00 2020-05-13 09:42 -07:00 Are you interested in COVID-19 Virtual Grand Rounds? Take our 5-minute survey The California Health and Human Services Agency is partnering with the California Medical Association and academic medical centers across the state to host a regular series of virtual grand rounds for the state’s clinicians on the evolving understanding and management of COVID-19 patients. Wed, 13 May 2020 14:25:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-13 14:25 +00:00 2020-05-13 07:25 -07:00 SBA issues new FAQ on Paycheck Protection Program SBA issued a new FAQ today to clarify certain rules for the Paycheck Protection Program, which provides forgivable loans to physician practices to cover operating expenses. Practices are encouraged to review this document. Wed, 13 May 2020 12:12:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-13 12:12 +00:00 2020-05-13 05:12 -07:00 CMA President Peter N. Bretan, Jr., M.D., Statement on Speaker Pelosi’s "Heroes Act" CMA President Peter N. Bretan, Jr., M.D., issued the following statement in response to the $3 trillion coronavirus response package introduced yesterday by U.S House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Wed, 13 May 2020 11:43:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-13 11:43 +00:00 2020-05-13 04:43 -07:00 Speaker Pelosi introduces $3 trillion coronavirus response package U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi unveiled a new $3 trillion coronavirus relief plan on Tuesday that includes $1 trillion in direct aid for states, increases federal matching payments for Medicaid and offers an additional $100 billion in direct aid to physicians and hospitals that does not need to be repaid. Tue, 12 May 2020 17:19:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-12 17:19 +00:00 2020-05-12 10:19 -07:00 New COVID-19 webinars in CMA's on-demand library CMA has added new COVID-19 webinars to its library of on-demand education. These webinars are available free to all interested parties as part of CMA’s ongoing support for physicians during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Tue, 12 May 2020 16:42:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-12 16:42 +00:00 2020-05-12 09:42 -07:00 CMA announces new twice-weekly publishing schedule Starting this week, CMA will be shifting to a twice weekly schedule for our member communications. Our Daily COVID-19 Roundup will become a weekly COVID-19 specific update sent out on Friday, and we will resume distribution of CMA Newswire on a weekly schedule (on Tuesdays). Tue, 12 May 2020 16:39:00 Z bbyrdwick@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-12 16:39 +00:00 2020-05-12 09:39 -07:00 CMA urges lawmakers to protect physicians from unfair lawsuits during public health emergency The California Medical Association (CMA) and the California Hospital Association (CHA) are urging Congress to pass legislation that includes protection against unfair lawsuits for health care workers. Tue, 12 May 2020 16:27:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-12 16:27 +00:00 2020-05-12 09:27 -07:00 Signs of COVID-19 stability lead California to Stage 2 of reopening   Governor Gavin Newsom  on Thursday announced  that the state will begin   moving into Stage 2 of his reopening plan and begin  granting  counties  additional jurisdiction over  the  pace of   reopening  in their communities.  Thu, 07 May 2020 17:05:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-07 17:05 +00:00 2020-05-07 10:05 -07:00 HHS clarifies providers should receive 2% of gross patient revenue from Provider Relief Fund This week HHS clarified the Provider Relief Fund payment allocation methodology and eligibility. A provider’s estimated total allocation should be approximately 2% of their 2018 gross patient revenue.  Thu, 07 May 2020 16:36:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-07 16:36 +00:00 2020-05-07 09:36 -07:00 CMS announces additional temporary regulatory flexibilities On April 30, 2020, CMS released an interim final rule that establishes new regulatory flexibilities. Thu, 07 May 2020 16:10:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-07 16:10 +00:00 2020-05-07 09:10 -07:00 HHS extends Provider Relief Fund attestation deadlines HHS has extended the deadline for physicians to attest to receipt of payments from the Provider Relief Fund and accept the  terms and conditions . Physicians Thu, 07 May 2020 15:52:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-07 15:52 +00:00 2020-05-07 08:52 -07:00 Governor signs order to make it easier to receive workers’ comp for COVID-19 claims Governor Gavin Newsom on Wednesday signed an executive order to ensure that employees who contract COVID-19 during the course of their employment can receive workers’ compensation benefits. Wed, 06 May 2020 16:06:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-06 16:06 +00:00 2020-05-06 09:06 -07:00 AMA urges international medical graduates be exempted from immigration bans AMA is urging the Trump Administration to exempt J-1, H-1B and O-1 international medical graduates (IMGs) from any future immigration bans or limitations. Wed, 06 May 2020 12:28:00 Z kboroski@cmadocs.org_53 2020-05-06 12:28 +00:00 2020-05-06 05:28 -07:00